Top positive review
Reviewed in the United States on October 30, 2014
Update Nov 18th: The Android 5.0 (Lollypop) update is live, and this tablet is faster and even more versatile than before.
This tablet isn't for everyone. This tablet taps the RAW POWAH of your home gaming rig through the network, giving it an 8-inch window that you can take anywhere (well, anywhere with a good connection.) This tablet will allow your current PC Gaming obsession to become a constant companion. Everywhere you go, it will be whispering "play me" from inside your bag, enticing you to game during lunch breaks, in church, and even during Holidays when you're miles from your beloved battle station. Can you handle that? Do you have the sheer strength of WILL to maintain a social life when your games are always at your side? DO YOU?!
Sound, screen, and performance are all amazing. This is hands-down the most powerful 8" tablet on the market today. (It even competes with the upcoming Nexus 9 in many regards.)
NVIDIA GRID(tm) Cloud Gaming (currently in beta) may one day replace the home gaming rig. (Think Netflix streaming for PC Games)
This tablet is LOLLYPOP READY, meaning there's an update incoming soon. (Oh, NVIDIA, your updates prove your unending love.)
Supports 128GB MicroSD for holding selections from your library of perfectly legal TV shows, movies, music, games, and more apps.
Battery leaves much to be desired, but that's what power packs are for.
SHIELD stream isn't great, yet. Some games will move to a lower resolution and remain jagged or blurry, despite your settings. (Nvidia products age like fine wine. As always, NVIDIA is being fairly consistent with updates.)
The SHIELD Controller is mandatory for nearly all PC games AND Tegra-optimized Android games, but not included. A coupon would be nice, an included controller would be great. Alas, the world isn't fair.
1) Update your NVIDIA GPU drivers for best Game Stream results. If you don't have an NVIDIA GPU that supports GameStream, get one or return this tablet.
2) If a certain PC game doesn't work via GameStream, then Splashtop Remote is your friend. (Splashtop even has official NVIDIA endorsements, and works for touch-friendly PC games like Hearthstone.)
3) If you experience a lot of stutter, ensure your Wireless N router supports 5ghz, is running at 5ghz, and you have a good signal.
4) Install VLC for Android, use for all media, profit.
A few stats for my fellow Hardware buffs:
i5 3570k @4.2Ghz
8GB Mushkin Redline @2133Mhz
GTX 780 Classified (EVGA 03G-P4-3788-KR)
Netgear wnr2000v3 router